About The Project


The Engine Shed Project consists of a number of strands and phases, shared by the Students' Union and its partner in the project, the University of Northampton. These can be summarised as incorporating:

  • Construction and restoration works
  • Student engagement activity
  • Community engagement activity


Construction and Restoration Works

Works began on the Engine Shed site in September 2016 with the errection of external scafolding to ensure the safety and security of the building

Since the beginning of October meaningful work has begun with the removal of the Engine Shed's original windows for restoration and major works will continue until July 2017, when interior works will commence. 


Student Engagement Activity

A significant opportunity for students at the University of Northampton to involve themselves in a large scale construction project, the Union will engage students undertaking construction management to participate in a number of projects and placements, allowing for the development of real world skills particularly in conservation. 

The Students' Union's Trustee Board, which consists of 6 elected student members, will receive training and mentoring in project and construction management alongside expert advice to enable effective decision making on matters relating to the Engine Shed, whilst developing their transferable employability skills. 

The Students' Union will also engage a number of students from across the University in subjects including History, Media and Design to capture the oral histories and memories of local residents who worked or trained at the Engine Shed, the impact of the Engine Shed on Northampton and wider impacts of rail trainsport and Avon as an employer. 


Community Engagement

During the capital works, hard hat tours of the site will be available to visiting school groups as part of its existing Aspire programme. A similar tour will be made available to interested local residents.

The Union shall further work with students to create a pack for classroom use based around the Engine Shed project. The pack would explore the history of the building as well as its development as a heritage project within the context of urban regeneration and the Waterside Enterprise Zone. 

The Engine Shed is envisaged as lively student and community hub, and as such it will be the focal point for community engagement events on campus, following completion. The Union wil work with Event Management and Music Technology students will organise and deliver a number of events each year based in and around the Engine Shed with broad appeal to local residents. 

These events will be further supported by the activities of individual students and affiliated student groups undertaking their own heritage activities, funded by a Student Heritage Fund administered by the Students' Union that mirrors that offered through its Planet Too environmental project. 

Throughout the development of the Engine Shed a handful of our architecture students took part in a placement of helping reform and build our new Students' Union on Campus. Here, is Mohammed, one of the placement students.